Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Iran admits delivering drones to Russia

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“We provided Russia with a limited number of drones months before the war in Ukraine. Iran, through its Foreign Minister, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, confessed on Saturday November 5 to having supplied drones to Russia, before the invasion of Ukraine at the end of February, confirming accusations by kyiv against Moscow.

This is the first time that Tehran has reported the delivery of drones to Moscow, Iran limiting itself in recent weeks, despite repeated accusations from kyiv and its Western allies, to deny these claims.

“Even making this confession, they lied,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky reacted in the evening, accusing Iranian leaders of minimizing the number of drones delivered.

“We shoot down at least 10 Iranian drones every day, and the Iranian regime says it would have given few, and even before the start of the full-scale invasion” of Ukraine, denounced Zelensky. “On a single day yesterday, 11 Shaheds were destroyed. We know for certain that Iranian instructors taught Russian terrorists how to use drones, and Tehran in general remains silent about this,” he added.

Kyiv has spotted around 400 Iranian drones

kyiv had already claimed several days ago that Iranian “about 400 drones” had already been used against the Ukrainian population and that Moscow had ordered about 2,000.

For the Ukrainian president, “if Iran continues to lie about obvious things, it means that the world will make even more efforts to investigate the terrorist cooperation between the Russian and Iranian regimes and what Russia pays to Iran for such cooperation”.

“That only one of the terrorists or their accomplices remains unpunished, this will not exist in the modern world”, concluded on this subject Zelensky.

“Tehran must realize that the consequences of complicity in the crimes […] of Russia against Ukraine will be far greater than the benefit of Russia’s support,” the spokesman for the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs had previously declared. Foreign Affairs, Oleg Nikolenko.

The head of Iranian diplomacy said on Saturday that he was ready to examine any “evidence” from kyiv of the use of Iranian drones in the conflict.

Tehran’s confessions about these drone deliveries to Moscow further mark the rapprochement between Russia and Iran that has begun in recent months, in the face of a Ukraine largely supported by the United States and the EU, and while the China stands clear of any direct involvement in the war.

Iran, however, denied on Saturday that its country supplied missiles to Russia, deeming these accusations “completely false”. News reports in recent days have reported potential deliveries of Iranian surface-to-surface missiles to Russia.

Despite Tehran’s denials in recent weeks, the EU and the UK had announced new sanctions targeting three Iranian generals and an arms company “responsible for supplying Russia with suicide drones” to bomb Ukraine. In September, kyiv, for its part, decided to considerably reduce its diplomatic relations with Tehran.

“Additional restrictions” of electricity

Faced with excessive demand for electricity on Saturday, the Ukrainian operator Energo announced that it had put in place “additional restrictions […] in the form of emergency interruptions”.

Several regions are affected, including the capital kyiv, while power outages had already taken place for several days to limit civilian electricity consumption.

Ukraine’s electricity system has been heavily affected by multiple Russian strikes in recent weeks, raising fears of a winter without electricity and water for many civilians.

On the ground, in the northeast, the commander of the 127th Ukrainian brigade, Roman Grychchenko, described to AFP “a stabilized situation”, with “rare attacks by drones, artillery and commando operations” Russian in the area, recovered by the Ukrainians in September. But “we are moving as quickly as possible in all directions,” he said, from the recaptured village of Starytsya, three kilometers from the Russian border.

In the south, according to the Ukrainian presidency, “the Russian occupiers are trying to identify the inhabitants who refuse to be evacuated” from Kherson to the territories occupied by Moscow’s troops, further from the front line, or even towards Russia itself. -same.

On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin justified these evacuations for the first time, saying that civilians “must be kept away” from “the most dangerous” combat zones.

Ukraine has once again denounced a policy of “deportation”. The Russian Defense Ministry, for its part, said on Saturday that it had “destroyed a radar station (used) for the S-300 anti-aircraft missiles” and “intercepted 27 American Himars” in the Kherson region.

Shooting at a judge

Further east, a judge of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Donetsk was wounded by bullets on Friday and is “in serious condition”, the Russian occupation authorities announced on Saturday.

The Interior Ministry of this region annexed at the end of September by Moscow in eastern Ukraine, however, did not give more details on the modus operandi or the reasons for this attack.

According to Denis Pushilin, a senior official of the Russian occupation authority, this judge, Nikulin, “convicted Nazi war criminals” – a reference to Ukrainians, according to the terminology used by the Kremlin to justify the invasion Russian in Ukraine at the end of February.

In the occupied city of Melitopol, Russian occupation authorities have announced that they have returned a statue of Lenin that was torn down during the 2014 revolution.

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